The Limestone Lens

Focusing In On Anti-Racism and Equity

Here we are, in June, at the end of the school calendar year. What a year it has been!


This year, we faced unsettling truths, loss, and unprecedented realities in all aspects of our lives. The pandemic left us working through many strong emotions, often in isolation, wondering what actions we could take to contribute towards creating more equitable change.


Now, with the province's gradual reopening, we have an opportunity before us to re-enter our community spaces with equity at the forefront of our actions and decisions.


We can use this summer to continue our inner-work and deepen our personal understanding of equity topics so that we can come together in September stronger than ever!


This year, seeds of reflection and understanding have been planted, but they need time and a healthy environment to flourish.


This summer, everyone is encouraged to continue nurturing those seeds, to help our community grow in understanding so that everyone can see themselves in Limestone!


Have a wonderful summer!

Anti-Racism Work Requires Rest—Here’s How 4 Social Justice Activists Practice Self Care

"Self-care for activists is important—here are 4 practices social justice activists personally use.


1. Spiritual baths

One way that Mack practices self-care is through spiritual baths, which are baths incorporated with meditation practices. “While you’re in the bathtub, focus on grounding yourself in your worthiness to be liberated, to experience rest, to experience the messiness that is liberation and movement work,” says Mack. They say that by taking spiritual baths, you can “ground yourself in your worthiness to be imperfect, to not always show up and be right and have the right thing to say.”



2. Taking in sunlight or eating foods that make you feel good

Doing the work often means having to revisit or read about one’s own trauma, which can be tiring. To take care of herself and naturally replenish her energy, Michelle Saahene, speaker, activist, and co-founder of From Privilege to Progress tries to soak in as much sunshine.

“I try to get sunlight—that makes me happy,” she says. She also recommends listening to your body’s needs—whether that’s by hydrating or eating foods that make you feel good. “I try to drink a lot of water and eat a lot of fruit.”


3. Meditation

“I use meditation to calm my mind, dig deep into my self-consciousness, and visualize what I want for myself,” says Taylor. Meditating right before bed helps Taylor fall asleep and center herself, and she also incorporates meditation into her life about three to four times a week. Taylor’s anti-racism work includes building better avenues for Black and Brown people to exist and succeed, which requires her to breathe, reflect, and express herself, all factors for which meditation provides.


4. Establish a morning or evening wellness practice

“As a Black woman living in a society that is incredibly violent and hostile to my identity in every way possible, to choose to prioritize self-care is not only a form of resistance, but it’s necessary for my ability to live and connect with my humanity,” says Monique Melton, educator, author, podcast host of Shine Brighter Together."


From: https://www.wellandgood.com/self-care-for-activists/

The Inner Work of Racial Justice | Rhonda Magee | TEDxMarin

Recognize Your Actions, As an Actor, Ally or Accomplice

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Reflect On Where you Are, and where you want to go...

Reflect

Who do you think of as an ally?

Who do you think of as an accomplice?
What stops you from taking your action to the next level?

Act

Take your action to the next level from Actor to Ally: guidetoallyship.com
Take your actions to the next level from Ally, to Accomplice: whiteaccomplices.org/


Source: https://libraryguides.saic.edu/learn_unlearn/foundations1

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Sites To Support Anti-Racism Work

Anti-Racism Resource List - The Ontario Federation of Labour: A list of courses, readings, videos, and podcasts on anti-racism, compiled by the OFL Workers of Colour Committee, CBTU, and the OFL.


ON Canada Project: Settlers Take Action: Exploring personal responsibilities related to reconciliation for Non-Indigenous folk who live in Canada.


Talking with your Children about Islamophobia and Hate-Based Violence: Explores how to discuss Islamophobia and hate-based violence against Muslims with children. This fact sheet highlights, for parents and caregivers, strategies that can be used to facilitate effective conversations, age-specific guidelines, and actions families and communities can take.


How to Talk About Racism in Your Household: Here are eight tips for talking to your kids about racism.

CONTINUE READING AND REFLECTING ...

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Join Professional Learning Opportunities

2021 National Black Canadians Summit Series - Breaking Barriers in Education

The 2021 National Black Canadians Summit will be as a series of free, digital events to discuss the challenges in the black community


On June 22nd, join a conversation with education leaders and trailblazers about the systemic changes needed to redress the issues faced by Black learners in all levels of education.


In this panel discussion, we will seek solutions to actively dismantle systems and structures that exclude and disadvantage Black people, while simultaneously identifying new pathways, supports and programs that aim to remove these barriers.

The discussion will highlight case studies demonstrating positive impact and sustainable change.

Here is the link to register: https://www.eventbrite.ca/e/national-black-canadians-summit-breaking-barriers-in-education-tickets-157648439727?aff=ebdsoporgprofile

LDSB OPPORTUNITIES

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WATCH, LISTEN AND LEARN

Racism: Problems and Solutions Documentaries is a series of videos highlighting the personal stories of individuals who have dealt with racism and discrimination.


The series is intended to inspire conversation and generate support for continued advocacy. These documentary-style videos highlight stories advocating for a more equitable Canada featuring heroes who have broken new ground in their views and achieved experiences that are worth sharing.


All the videos can be accessed on their YouTube channel.


FROM: https://www.crrf-fcrr.ca/en/programs/education-and-training/item/27116-racism-problems-and-solutions

And Take Time to Celebrate Identities and Experiences!

National Indigenous Peoples Day

This June 21, 2021, is the national 25th anniversary of celebrating the heritage, diverse cultures, and outstanding achievements of FirstNations, Métis, and Inuit peoples!

Below is a list of resources and suggestions.

How will you celebrate?

Happy Pride Month!

QTBIPOC RESOURCES

"Racism is one of the primary reasons that QTBIPOC have been and continue to be erased from 2SLGBTQIA+ history in Canada. The histories of people of white or European descent have been prioritized in Canadian history, partly because they have been the ones writing history. As a result, historical sources and archives that usually designate what is 'official' history have not focused on the voices of QTBIPOC. This is true for 2SLGBTQIA+ histories and historians too!"

Here are some resources that have been created and compiled, from The Canadian Centre For Gender & Sexual Diversity, for the purpose of education and documentation of history.

https://ccgsd-ccdgs.org/resources/



Have you heard about the Progress Pride Flag?

The flag adds more inclusive colors to acknowledge groups that have been historically left out of Pride events. The flag includes black and brown stripes to represent marginalized LGBTQ+ communities of color, along with the colors pink, light blue, and white, which are used on the Transgender Pride Flag."

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THE LIMESTONE LENS: FOCUSING IN ON ANTI-RACISM AND EQUITY

As Limestone District School Board employees, we are all a part of this learning journey. If you have ideas about future equity topics or terminology, please contact Rae McDonald.